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that period. Counsel Fellows's account for services prior to March 28, 1910, appears to have been unavailable when the department made its proposal of settlement, and none of the commissioners submitted accounts for services for the period in question. The figures for the period subsequent to March 28, 1910, however, were taken from the accounts for services furnished by the commissioners and counsel, except in the case of Commissioner Murchie, whose services were estimated on the basis of services performed by Commissioner Keegan during the same time.
Mr. Fellows's account for services prior to March 28, 1910, shows that he devoted 145 days to the work of the commission, or 95 days more than the department's estimate. The account also shows that the commissioners during the same period devoted 63 days to taking testimony, so that the department's estimate of 50 and 42 days, respectively. for Commissioners Keegan and Murchie was apparently too low. Neither Commissioner Keegan nor the representative of Commissioner Murchie has furnished an exact statement of the commissioners' services prior to March 28, 1910, and it is necessary, there fore, to estimate the period of their services. No very satisfactory basis for such estimate has been found, but the department believes that an allowance of 37 days in addition to the 63 days occupied in taking testimony, or a total of 100 days each for Commissioners Keegan and Murchie would be very gener. ous, and it would be willing to recommend compensation for that time. The additional 37 days has been allowed as the time possibly devoted to the study of testimony and preparation for hearings.
On the basis above suggested the total number of days of service would be as follows:
The above statement is believed to be a fair and generous allowance of time as a basis of compensation. It is considerably greater than the number of dars for which the Canadian members of the commission received compensation, as is indicated by the following comparative table: CANADIAN COMMISSIONERS,
Days, Commissioner Barnhill.
268 Commissioner Teed.
127 Commissioner Murchie Commissioner Keefe172 Commissioner Madigan.
517 Regarding the rate of compensation, I beg to state that the department would not feel justified in recommending a per diem of $50 as requested by the petitioners. It regards such a sum as entirely out of proportion to payments 1754ally made by this Government for services of such commissions and considers that it would be useless to ask Congress for an appropriation to pay such an amount. The department's previous proposal of settlement, above mentioned, was based on an annual compensation of about $7,500, which is greater than that paid to most commissioners, some of whom have devoted practically all of their time to their official duties. As an additional concession to the peti.
tioners, however, and in order to dispose finally of this matter, the department would be willing to recommend the payment of compensation at the rate of $25 per diem, which is approximately $9,000 per annum, for the time devoted to the work of the commission as shown by the revised table above set forth. The following statement shows the compensation to which each commissioner and counsel would be entitled on the basis above suggested :
As the several şums appropriated by Congress for the work of the commission have been expended, an additional appropriat on must be obtained before any additional compensat on can be paid to the petitioners. If the latter are willing to accept the amounts above indicated as payment in full for all services performed in connection with the work of the commission, the department would be willing to make appropriate recommendation to Congress with a view to obtaining the necessary funds.
The CHAIRMAN. It is a claim, is it not?
Mr. CARR. Oh, yes. We have had a great deal of correspondence about it which has come to the department mainly through the Senators from Maine, who have submitted it to the department and who have appeared at the department in favor of the matter on several occasions.
REIMBURSEMENT OF HUGH GIBSON, AMERICAN MINISTER TO POLAND.
The CHAIRMAN. The next item is, “For reimbursing Hugh Gibson, American minister to Poland, for loss of Government funds through robbery of the American Legation on December 13, 1920, $2.133.65." What justification is there for that; were they his funds or the Government's funds?
Mr. CARR. The Government's funds. They came into his possession in this way: On the night of December 13, 1920, the steel box in the embassy was broken open by somebody—they were never able to find out whom—and United States currency and local currency to the value of $2,133.65, all the property of the United States, was stolen. Practically all of the money had that day been drawn from the bank for the payment of outstanding telegraph bills.
The ('HAIRMAN. Did they not pay them by check?
Mr. Carr. No; they were paid in cash for some local reason. You will understand that the conditions over in that part of the world at that time were very extraordinary.
The CHAIRMAN. That was in 1920 ?
The CHAIRMAN. They were not much different from what they are to-day?
Mr. Carr. I think they have improved a good deal over what they were then the conditions are now more stable.
After the money
was drawn why it was not possible to pay the bills that afternoon, so the money was put away in the steel box, which was hidden away, but the next morning the steel box was broken open and the money gone. Nothing that the embassy could do or that the Polish Gov. ernment could do has ever revealed any trace of the person responsible for it. I have here Mr. Gibson's dispatch detailing all of the facts in connection with it.
The CHAIRMAN. There is not any evidence that it was stolen?
Mr. CARR. No. He found the box in the cellar, I believe, broken open.
The CHAIRMAN. Did he have charge of the box; did he put the money in the box himself in the first place? Does he state that?
Mr. CARR. He says:
Having no safe, I was obliged to keep the legation's cash and cipher codes as best I could. A small room on the second floor of the legation was chosen for this purpose because of its inaccessibility. The cash and codes were in small steel boxes purchased in Warsaw from the contingent fund. These locked boxes were placed in a large wooden cupboard, also locked. The one door to the room was locked. The only door at the end of the passageway was likewise locked. At the head of the stairway there was a locked door and at the foot of the stairs were three sets of doors, the only means of egress, and these were all locked every night. A servant, hired by me at niy own expense, slept at the foot of the stairs in order to give an alarm of any danger and answer the door and telephone bells. I am unable to see what further steps I could have taken to insure the safety of this money, unless I had been afforded a legation guard of marines or troops. I did not feel that I could ask any of the commissioned members of the staff to stand guard during the night, though in times of general unrest we divided the cipher codes and kept them at our bedsides. The natural apprehension I felt for the cipher codes and Government funds was a distinct nervous strain that I should not like to ask other members of the staff to go through again.
On the morning of December 14, 1920, one of the legation servants came up from the furnace room with the legation's cash box broken open. Its contents had been taken and the box rather ineffectually hidden on top of the furnace. A hasty inquiry showed that $170, 4,000 French francs, and 850,000 Polish marks had been stolen, as well as the special passport of Corwin M. Doss (one of the legation clerks), and personal funds of the staff deposited for safekeeping.
The large sum in Polish marks had been drawn to pay the legation's telegraph bill for the previous quarter, the bills having just been received. The legation's accountant, Mr. Collom, had deferred payment until the following day because of his inability to get an interpreter to go with him to the telegraph office and arrange for the receipts in the form required for his accounting. But for this the bill would have been paid the previous day.
The codes and confidential files were equally exposed to the theft, but fortunately had not been touched.
Aside from the lock of the box, two doorlocks had been forced in order to gain admission to the room. As the arrangement of the legation's chancery is far from simple and as particular pains had been taken to render the cash box inac cessible, it seems clear that the burglary was committed by some one familiar with he interior arrangement of the house or some one who had a confederate inside the legation. By the time the burglary was discovered all the three sets of doors at the foot of the stairs had been unlocked; I was unable to satisfy myself as to whether any of them were found unlocked in the morning. This was obviously an important element in the case which I could not prevail upon the police to investigate,
When the cash box was brought up from the furnace room it was promptly put away in order not to arouse suspicion and Mr. Moffat, one of the secretaries of the legation, was dispatched to the ministry to ask that a detective be sent to the legation in order to make a discreet preliminary inquiry and see whether he could find some clue. The ministry was particularly requested to have this done quietly in order to avoid arousing suspicion.
The commissioner of police who accompanied the 12 or 15 men who made the original investigation was asked to consider himself at liberty to come and go as he liked, to make any request that might occur to him, knowing that we would wish to help him in any possible way. As a preliminary I suggested that he question the secretaries of the legation, the accountant, the code clerk, the servants who built the fires and swept the upstairs rooms of the chancery, the man who slept in the front hall, the messengers, etc., as well as myself. I told him that he might in this way get a clear idea as to the precautions that were taken for safeguarding the money, the people who had access to the room, those who had at any time in the past had such access, whether anyone was aware that a large sum of money happened to be in the cash box, etc.
The CHAIRMAN. He does not say who put the money in the box or whether it was ever in the box?
Mr. Carr. No; his dispatch does not contain that information.
Mr. Gallivan. Has this ever been considered by any committee before?
Mr. CARR. No, sir.
Mr. GALLIVAN. The theft took place in December, 1920, but he waited until the following August to make a report?
Mr. Carr. No; he reported it immediately; but the department naturally expected and instructed him, I think, to take all necessary measures over there and to exhaust all the resources at his command. either to find the money or to find the person who stole it.
Mr. GALLIVAN. What does he report on that?
The CHAIRMAN. He really knew the money was in the box and who put it in?
Mr. CARR. That is the statement, Mr. Chairman, I do not find in his report. He does say, however, that suspicion rested upon a certain person who had formerly been in the employ of the legation, but who disappeared from Warsaw after the theft. The report was delayed—that is, the detailed report—until August, 1921, to give the Polish authorities ample time to try to find the thief. They did not succeed.
Mr. Gibson had no other means for keeping the money. He had no safe, although he had asked for one, but the department had not been able for various reasons to get him one.
The CHAIRMAN. It is rather strange to think that the man who had charge of the payments should draw the money out of the bank to-day, with a view to paying bills to-day, and then postpone the payment until to-morrow, because he could not find a man to interpret for him and get the receipts in the form in which he wanted them.
Mr. Carr. I agree with you that it does seem strange, but the conditions in Poland were not normal. On the other hand, Mr. Gibson has had to account to the Government for the money, and has paid it out of his own pocket. Therefore he is the sufferer, and I believe that he has unjustly suffered, knowing the conditions under which he had to work. They were very trying. It is hardly fair to him to lose this money, and the department hopes you may be able to reimburse him.
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 18, 1922.
STATEMENTS OF MR. W. G. PLATT, CHIEF CLERK; MR. J. C. HAIR,
BOOKKEEPER; AND MR. JACOB PYROH, MECHANICAL SUPERIN. TENDENT.
PUCHASE OF COAL, WOOD, ENGINE OILS, ETC.
The CHAIRMAN. You are asking for $3,000 with which to buy pokers, tongs, shovels, and things of that sort. What do you want this $3,000 for?
Mr. PLATT. We want to buy coal with it.
The CHAIRMAN. You have not coal enough to run until the 1st of July?
Mr. PLATT. No, sir. We will have to have, instead of the $3,000 estimated here: an additional amount. We are going to have to ask you for $4,500.
The CHAIRMAN. We are not now considering anything that is not before us, and there is no estimate of $4,500 before us. You have no authority to submit an estimate here and neither has anybody else except the President.
Mr. Platt. I am telling you what I think it will take now because of conditions that have arisen since this estimate was submitted.
The CHAIRMAN. What are those conditions?
Mr. PLATT. We were not anticipating this very cold weather we are having.
The CHAIRMAX. That has been for only two or three days.
Mr. PLATT. We have had pretty severe weather since the 31st of January
The CHAIRMAX. It has not been very cold.
Mr. Platt. We estimated, when we asked the original appropriation, for $35,000, and you gave us $25,000. We have expended more than that every year. Last year we expended $31,814, and this is a much more severe winter than last winter was. Of course, the price of coal is a little cheaper, but we have a condition at the Treasury Building that we did not have a year ago, in that the roof is off the building.
The CHAIRMAN. It is off just a little place.
Mr. PLATT. The whole roof is off from the entire east side and west side of the building. It is practically out-of-doors.
The CHAIRMAN. You are not trying to heat the whole out-of-doors, are you?
Mr. PLATT. We are trying to heat the building.
Mr. Platt. It is pretty hard to say that, because of the fact that ours bills are not all in.
The ('HAIRMAN. You do not know how much you will need if you
do not know how much you have. Mr. Platt. Yes, sir; we know pretty well how much we will need. We know how much coal we burn, and I think we know about how